The Chicago Bears finished their training camp portion of the offseason yesterday, but they only have a quick stop at Halas Hall this week on Tuesday before spending some quality time in Denver practicing with the Broncos in advance of Saturday’s preseason game. Matching up with another team will prove invaluable to these young Bears as they work towards preparing for their season opener in Green Bay against the Packers.
They’ll open up in prime time on Sunday Night Football with the eyes of the entire league on them, and with the Roquan Smith holdout finally over, the national focus falls squarely on their on-field storylines.
Every day that went by without Smith signing his contract added to the likelihood that he would miss some of the regular season, but now with him under contract he can work the rust off scrimmaging against Denver Broncos (if he proves physically ready).
The Bears were content to play the waiting game on Smith, and they even threw a little shade his way last week.
That’s business as usual with current starting inside linebackers Danny Trevathan and Nick Kwiatkoski.
And perhaps this shade continued over the weekend too.
Now that Roquan is under contract, he’ll need to earn the starting spot next to Trevathan that many expected he’d have in 2018. Defensive coordinator Vic Fangio won’t turn to the rookie until he feels he can grasp what they’re trying to do defensively. Smith has no doubt had his face in the play book and he’s watched plenty of film. He’s also talked with some of his defensive teammates, but nothing beats being on the field. Getting accustomed to the speed of the game, and just as important, building the trust with the other ten guys on the field with him.
Smith can finally start building that trust this week.
The recent suspension of Jalen Ramsey by the Jacksonville Jaguars possibly shows us what Smith could be fighting for. Ramsey was suspended a week for violating team rules when he went after a reporter via Twitter. Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio reported that the suspension could have led to the Jags voiding the remainder of Ramsey’s guaranteed money, which is more that $6 million. Jacksonville announced that they weren’t going to take his guarantee, but that was likely an option they had. Florio says that this “situation shows the value of the haggling in which Bears linebacker Roquan Smith currently is engaged.”
The Bears will kickoff in Green Bay in 27 days, so there’s still plenty of time for Smith to get up to speed,
The Bears play the Broncos on Saturday, August 18, then they host the Kansas City Chiefs on Saturday, August 25, before wrapping the preseason schedule up with the Buffalo Bills coming to Chicago on Thursday, August 30.
EDIT: Now that Smith has signed, I expect the Yes option to dominate this poll. I think there’s enough time for Smith to win a starting job too.
Do you think Roquan Smith will be in a Bears’ uniform on week one against the Packers?
This poll is closed